It's official! America's largest sandwich chain found a buyer six months after announcing a sale. An intriguing development is that Subway's new owner is a fast-food giant that also controls its largest competitors.
Roark Capital affiliates will buy Subway, the company announced today. Subway didn't announce the transaction price, although Roark was close to buying Subway for $9.6 billion.
Roark Capital manages $37 billion in private equity assets. Subway will join Roark's extensive portfolio, which includes Buffalo Wild Wings, Dunkin', Auntie Anne's, Sonic, Carl's Jr., and Hardee's.
Subway claimed the deal will combine its "global presence and strong reputation with Roark's deep expertise in dining and franchise models."
"This transaction shows Subway's long-term growth potential, and the substantial worth of our brand and franchisees worldwide," Subway CEO stated.
Subway made numerous major improvements to improve its sales, store closures, food quality complaints, franchisee disagreement, and public image after years of decline.
The chain launched its "multi-year transformation journey" in 2021 with Eat Fresh Refresh. This campaign revamped the bread, meats, toppings, and sandwiches.
Subway introduced "Subway Series," a series of sandwiches with pre-set ingredients, in 2022, replacing its configurable sandwiches.
Subway has made significant adjustments, including introducing freshly sliced meats, rebuilding thousands of stores, and replacing mom-and-pop owners with larger, more experienced franchisees.
These changes appear to be successful. Subway posted its tenth consecutive good same-store sales quarter.
"The company will continue to execute its strategy with a focus on sales growth, menu innovation, restaurant modernization
guest experience improvements, and international expansion," Subway said in today's purchase announcement.